Friday, January 29, 2010

I don’t *want* to drink, I just want to *pretend* to…

SO! I’m newly pregnant and no one knows! This presents few problems, except for wanting to yell from a mountaintop: “I AM FERTILE, HERE ME ROAR!”


The other main problem is when we have plans to do something with friends.  Do you know what plans with thirty-somethings always seem to include? That’s right, alcohol.  I’m lucky I haven’t missed drinking at all, since I’m a lightweight and don’t drink a lot, anyway.  Really, the only time I would drink before getting pregnant was in social situations and rarely did I have more than one or two in one sitting (I've grown up - and more responsible - over the past few years: SHOCKING!!).  Still, it’s quite obvious to my friends when I don’t drink now, since I’m always known to bring a six-pack over to share when we get invited to a gathering or order a glass of wine or beer during a dinner out.  Therefore, I’ve been shirking plans and telling people I’m busy when asked to have a drink after work, which really stinks!  Just because I can’t drink doesn’t mean I don’t want and miss the social interaction.  I’ve even ignored several email invites from a few friends asking me/us to get together for dinner and drinks.  And that’s just plain RUDE.

Some would say to lie, but I’m not a good liar and I honestly feel like lying would be jinxing things.  And since there are several people who know we were trying to get pregnant, I would feel wrong telling them I’m not if they were to ask if I am.  If I say ”no?” JINX!  I know that sounds silly to some, but it honestly stresses me out to think about.  Lying leads to bad things, folks.

I have plans this weekend to go home to Grand Rapids to have drinks with my older sister, Alicia, and my cousins Kimberly and Julie.  Julie sent an email early this month asking when would work for us to all get together for drinks, since it’s been waaaaaay too long, so we decided on January 30th.  That would be tomorrow.  When we made the plans, I didn’t know I was pregnant and as I mentioned before, I honestly didn’t think it would be this easy for us to conceive.  I’m NOT COMPLAINING, obviously, but it does put me in a slightly sticky situation if I’m not quite ready to share our great news yet.

I think I might arrive early to the restaurant and have a little chat with the waiter, asking them to bring whatever I order (daiquiri, margarita, etc.) to me, only WITHOUT the requisite alcohol in it.  That could work, right?  BUT, the idea of sharing this news with a stranger just so it isn’t shared with the people who have known and loved me my whole life seems so…wrong.

This secret pregnancy thing is so confusing, it could almost drive me to drink. ;o)

2/1/10 UPDATE:
I survived the dinner/drinks with my sister and cousins!  I only had to fib a little (and I'm SURE they saw right through it, anyway...) when I ordered Soda and Lime and got a funny look.  I simply said I was dealing with drainage from a cold & wasn’t feeling great and no one pressed.  No one wants to talk about your phlegm, yo.  I can live with this, especially knowing I will soon be able to admit the fib once we’ve been to the doctor and feel more comfortable sharing this news.  I’m not condoning lying, kids, but if you plan to tell the truth later?  I SAY GO FOR IT.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Four Years = A Lifetime of Difference

Four years ago today, Mark entered my world and rocked it in a way I never would have expected.  By the time he came into my life, I think I was finally at a place where I felt like I deserved someone like him, but I certainly didn’t believe I’d actually be able to find him.  However, if I would have put into words then what I thought I wanted in my 'forever person,' I certainly would have short-changed myself.  You see, I never would have thought to wish for a love so perfect and good.

In four years’ time, my life has become unrecognizable.  Not one thing today, aside from some family and friends, remains the same as it was the day my handsome, kind, blue-eyed husband walked into view and changed the way I look at the world.

 How cute is that? He was slightly mortified when I asked him to pose with this as we 
shopped for baby books, but he indulged me anyway. LOVE HIM!

I don’t have to tell you Mark is my favorite person – that’s a given.  I believe one can see that written all over my face when I look at him.  Truth is, I have the honor of being a wife to the best, most all-encompassing human being I’ve ever had the pleasure to know. I still find myself staring into space, wondering how I got so lucky, how in the world it ended up being me he chose to love for the rest of his life. Even when life isn’t perfect, I still have the knowledge that when I walk through the door of our home, there is a person waiting for me, willing and able to help me get through anything that may come.  I know it might sound cheesy to say, but I honestly DO think I have the best husband in the entire world.  Here are a few reasons why (grab your barf bucket now; I’m about to lay it on thick!):
  • He is thoughtful and kind and has a selfless, unfaltering heart;
  • he teases me in a loving way which has taught me how to laugh at myself;
  • he’s a most ethical and moral person, yet he never judges me, even when I judge myself;
  • he makes me feel safe…his hugs are a refuge;
  • he makes me laugh, sometimes even when I’m crying;
  • he is able to settle me down when I’m angry, without compromising the issue that made me upset in the first place;
  • he’s the smartest person I’ve ever met and always knows something about something – without being arrogant;
  • he is a great listener but also offers great advice;
  • he’s a giver, not a taker;
  • he takes such great care of me and our puppies and works exceedingly hard to provide a great life for us;
  • he never falters in his support for me and our life together;
  • he treats me as an equal, yet towers over me in every way in my own mind;
  • BEST OF ALL: he somehow loves me just the way I am – and reminds me of this love and admiration in little ways every single day.
And now, four years later, I am 5 & a half weeks pregnant with our baby. Knowing this makes my heart feel as if it could burst.  I can think of nothing more sacred and amazing than bringing someone into this world that shares Mark’s genes, who will someday offer more of the good he brings to this life. I won’t lie – I still feel like it’s a dream, me being able to carry that gift within me for the next months and eventually bring it into the world.  I hope I never take any of these blessings for granted.  I couldn’t ask for much more, and for that, I’m beyond grateful.

Happy four-year ‘dating’ anniversary, Mark.  I love you…so much.

Friday, January 22, 2010

I Own Smaller Dinner Plates

I was doing some online research for baby books today and was looking through part of one on Amazon when I…happened upon a photo of a naked, pregnant women about 6 months along.  And, well, I really hope my nipples don't get that BIG and dark, is all I’m saying…  *gulp*

Monday, January 18, 2010

And So It Begins…

I slept in today, which is what anyone with a paid day off should do.  For some reason, though, the second I woke up I thought, “I’m going to take a pregnancy test today,” and that’s just what I did.  I wasn’t expecting positive results.  We’ve only been trying for two months, after all.  So when the test quickly presented two lines, I couldn’t believe it.  I stared at my face in the mirror and breathlessly said, “Oh my…” and happy tears promptly sprung to my eyes.

 Mark and I write messages to each other on our bathroom mirror; 
the heart with 'love' you see in the mirror is one of them.

At 33.5 years old, I’ve spent plenty of time wondering about the man I would someday marry and the baby I would someday carry, both of whom I’d love more than life itself.  When Mark – my soul mate – came into my life, I found myself daydreaming about what our baby would look like.  I hoped it would have his chin dimple, and envisioned blonde hair and laughing, blue eyes.  At the same time, though, I also internally worried a lot about how hard it might be for me to conceive.  Being a mother is something I’ve known I wanted to do for a very, very long time - and when you want something badly enough, it almost seems inevitable that it would be hard to come by…right?

So when I saw those two pink lines, I must admit I felt disbelief.  Sure, I was happy enough to yell out to my puppies, sitting there staring up at me, “Girls, you might have a little brother or sister soon!”  Still, I was just skeptical enough to run to the store and buy a two-pack of pregnancy tests and pee on a second stick in the bathroom of Meijer, too.  OH, YES I DID.  I had plans to have lunch with a friend in less than an hour and knew I couldn’t truly enjoy myself if I didn’t know the truth beforehand.  Once again, those two lines instantly leaped up at me and I did a happy dance right there in the stall.  I quickly drove to Baby Gap and bought a teensy, tiny onesie that said ‘I *heart* Daddy,’ then went to lunch, lying through my teeth to my friend about how baby-making was going.

Later that night, I rolled up the stick with the two pink lines into the onesie – tying it with a bow – and put it back into the Gap bag.  I did this so Mark would think it was a random present, since we occasionally pick up little prizes for each other during errands.  He was lying in bed, getting ready for sleep, when I sat down beside him and handed him the bag.  It felt slightly reminiscent of our engagement day, actually, when he woke me from a deep sleep early one morning with a sweet card, red rose, and shiny diamond ring in hand.  On that day, I had no idea my life was about to change so much.  And on this night, he had no idea his was about to change even more.  As I handed him the bag, he tested the weight and said, “This doesn’t seem very big!” It took everything in me not to say, “Oh, trust me, it’s BIG!”  He took out the onesie and untied the bow.  And then, suddenly, he looked very confused.  Silly me; why did I think he would know what a pregnancy test looked like?  After asking several jumbled questions such as, “What’s this?…Is it a…test? What…?,” his face broke out into a huge smile and he said, “Oh baby, this is SUCH great news!!”  And then he practically hugged the little – yet oh-so-big – onesie before cradling me in his arms.

Now I sit here wondering about the ride on which we are about to embark.  What kind of ride will it be?  Will it be like a roller-coaster, with its thrilling ups and scary downs?  Or will it be more like a lazy Sunday drive through the country during which time we slowly pass by farms and dream about someday having a house on twenty acres with baby ducks swimming in a pond?  Truth is, I love both prospects equally.  And I plan on enjoying this ride, no matter what is in store for us.

One thing is for certain: this baby is already immeasurably loved and desired.  I’m in awe over the fact that as I type this, I’m in the beginning stages of growing a one-of-a-kind person, a unique being that only Mark and I were able to create together.  And with that realization, my outlook and life has instantly changed.

I can’t wait to know you, precious little one.